Belfast Telegraph

Northern Ireland family’s holiday nightmare after hit-and-run horror leaves 16-year-old in Spanish hospital

By Mark Bain

A north Belfast mum is appealing for help to get her son home from Spain after he suffered severe injuries in a hit-and-run accident on a family holiday.

Jay Hamill (16) from Ardoyne was left with a broken leg, broken pelvis and a hairline neck fracture after being knocked down in Salou nine days ago and has been in hospital since.

Eight of Jay's family had arrived in Salou on June 22.

But later that night their dream holiday turned into a nightmare when Jay, who had recently finished his GCSEs, was struck by a car and rushed to hospital.

His parents remain by his bedside and Jay is making good progress but is immobilised and will require a neck brace.

"It's been a living nightmare," said mum Elaine.

"We got here on holiday and went straight out for a family meal. Our grandson Leighton had fallen asleep, so me and Jay's dad Glenn had gone on up to the apartment.

"Jay asked could he stay with his big brother and cousin and on the way home he got knocked down after running across the road.

"My oldest son Ryan came running down with two policemen and said I had to get to the hospital.

Ryan said: "When I saw my brother lying on the ground, I thought he was dead.

"It was the scariest thing in my life - I'm still having flashbacks of it every time I try to go to sleep."

Elaine continued: "It's been a living nightmare.

"We're just physically drained, we just want him home.

"We have travel insurance but the company is not paying out, so we're asking for the public's help."

The family are trying to raise money to help them get Jay home, which means transfers to the airport, a flight home and getting him to hospital in Belfast.

Jay was moved out of intensive care last Thursday but mum Elaine and dad Glenn are staying at his bedside.

Elaine said: "They say that he's healing well and they're hoping to make him a special neck brace early this week.

"Hopefully then he can start to begin the transfer home to the hospital in Belfast.

"But we just don't know what to do. We're stuck over here until we get it sorted.

"At the hospital it's hard even to speak to people, with the language barrier.

"We have a girl at the hotel, Esme, who speaks fluent English and she's been brilliant - we would have been lost without her. It's tough, but Jay is in good spirits. He's just worried about me and his daddy, asking are we OK. And he just wants to know when he can go home.

"But we've been told it'll take £19,500 for his return in an air ambulance to a Belfast hospital and with the insurance company giving us no help we have nowhere else to turn, other than trying to raise the funds ourselves."

Friends in Belfast are trying to help raise the funds to bring Jay home.

Anyone who would like to donate towards the cost of bringing Jay home can visit www.JustGiving.com and search 'Carol Doyle'.

Belfast Telegraph

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